Umlauf After Dark ft. Daphne Tunes

Popular sculpture garden presents live music to recover from burglary

As if an arts organization didn't have enough to deal with while struggling to make it through this pandemic, the Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum was forced by the city to shut down indefinitely and then it was broken into and burglarized.

Santiago RD of Daphne Tunes, photo courtesy of Umlauf Gallery

The former occurred on July 2, when the city closed all Parks and Recreation Department facilities due to the spike in COVID-19 cases. The latter occurred on July 19, when just before 11pm, someone smashed their way into the museum's gallery building, shattered several windows, busted up the storage shed, and made off with some computer equipment, but not before trashing artwork in an exhibition by this year's Umlauf Prize-winning sculptor, Ling-lin Ku. The building alarm brought Austin Police Department officers by 11:01pm, but so far APD hasn't found the culprit or given the Umlauf any more information about on the case. Ling-lin Ku, however, will be able to repair her damaged work, and according to Umlauf Executive Director Sarah Story, she and the Umlauf are working out the logistics on when she can do that.

This isn’t the sort of thing that’s easy to deal with and recover from, but the staff at the Umlauf moved quickly to spread the word and make clear to the public that it's in need now more than ever. A fundraising appeal was launched on the museum's Facebook page on Monday morning, and it's drawn more than $2,600 to date, but for an organization that was already looking at a $500,000 loss due to the COVID closure, more support is essential. That's why the next program in its ongoing After Dark series – Umlauf After Dark: Studio Session, a livestream from Charles Umlauf’s art studio, featuring the dulcet tones and sweet instrumentation of Austin’s own Daphne Tunes – will be a bit more urgent than it would’ve been.

Now, the event itself will be a relaxed and relaxing affair, as Umlauf curator Katie Edwards guides us through the private studio, providing insights into previously unseen (and unfinished) works by the legendary creator, and vocalist Santiago RD and the band remind us how this city is downright blessed with musicians whose performative art can soothe a weary soul. But your support will certainly be encouraged and welcomed.

(Note: If your soul’s not at least a little weary right now, citizen, you might want to wake up and check the news. Everybody look what’s going down.)

This Umlauf After Dark livestream with Katie Edwards and Daphne Tunes runs Tuesday, July 28, 6-7pm, and you can access the audio and visual goodness right here.

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Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum, Daphne Tunes, arts fundraiser, pandemic burglary, Katie Edwards, Charles Umlauf, Ling-lin Ku

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